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BIG BLOW TO GUYO AS COURT ALLOWS CASE CHALLENGING HIS SWITCH TO UDA TO PROCEED.

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Isiolo Governor Abdi Guyo.

BY SAM ALFAN.

Isiolo Governor Abdi Guyo and his deputy John Lowasa have suffered a major blow in their bid to stop the case challenging their move to defect from Jubilee Party to the ruling party.

The three judge bench Jairus Ngaah, John Chigiti and Lawrence Mugambi dismissed a preliminary objection filed by the Governor and his deputy challenging jurisdiction of the court to hear and determine the case.

The court ruling now means the petition filed by Isiolo voters challenging move by the Governor and his deputy to defect from Jubilee Party to United Democratic Alliance Party (UDA) will proceed to the full hearing.

Judges ruled that they have jurisdiction to hear the case and dismissed the Governor application.

In his preliminary objection, Governor Guyo argued that the court lacks the requisite jurisdiction hear and determine the petition on the basis of section 40 of Political Parties Act.

He argued that the application is bad in law for seeking to restrain the Governor and his deputy from discharging their constitutional rights.

However, the judges dismissed the Governor arguments adding that the apprehension by the two that the voters are seeking for their removal from the office in the petition is misplaced.

“We are also of the humble opinion that the argument that this court is deficient of jurisdiction to dispose of this petition on the ground that the petition seeks the removal of a governor and his deputy is premature and at best, misconceived,” ruled the judges.

The court informed Governor Guyo and his deputy that in the petition, the Isiolo voters are seeking several orders including the court pronouncement on what various provisions of the Constitution entails with respect to conduct of political parties and their members, particularly those whom are elected to office on their respective parties’ ticket.

Guyo Ali Guracha, Mohamed Wario Jattani, Teddy Muturi and Steven Kihonge Ndung’u wants the High Court in Nairobi to issue a temporary injunction restraining President William Ruto’s UDA party from soliciting, sponsoring, encouraging, aiding and abetting the defection of and revolt by elected leaders of Jubilee Party.

Through lawyer Kibe Mungai, they further sought an order of mandatory injunction be issued pursuant to Section 34(f) of the Political Parties Act, 2011 to compel the Registrar of Political Parties to notify Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission that Guyo and Lowasa have ceased to be members of Jubilee Party.

“An order of injunction be issued to restrain the Registrar of Political Parties from condoning, acquiescing in aiding and abetting the scheme, actions and omissions of the United Democratic Alliance (UDA) of soliciting, sponsoring and encouraging the defection of and revolt by elected leaders of Jubilee Party pending hearing and determination of the constitution petition lodged against the two,” says the three voters.

According to the voters who are Azimio members, their petition raises substantial questions of law and refer the same to the Chief Justice Martha Koome for empanelment of a bench of at least five judges to hear and determine this case.

COURT EXTENDS ORDERS BLOCKING I&M BANK APPOINTED ADMINISTRATOR FROM MANAGING CAPE HOLDING LIMITED.

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Dusit D2 Hotel. /COURTESY PHOTO.

BY SAM ALFAN.

Appointment of two receiver managers to administer Cape Holdings Limited, a company that was placed under administration by I &M Bank remains suspended.

High Court extended the orders suspending the appointment Ponangipalli Venkata Rao and Swaroop Rao as joint administrators, pending hearing and determination of the suit filed by Senergy Industrial Credit Limited, which lays claim to Cape Holdings pending ruling on April 19th.

The court further extended orders blocking the joint administrators from assuming office, pending the ruling on the issue.

“A temporary injunction  restraining Ponangipalli Venkata Rao and Swaroop Rao from assuming office as joint administrators of Cape Holding Limited and from taking any other steps in furtherance of their appointment is hereby extended pending ruling on April 19th,” ordered Judge Mabeya.

The court had issued the orders stopping appointment of two receiver managers to administer Cape Holdings Limited, a company that was placed under administration by I &M Bank last month.

FORMER REREC GENERAL MANAGER CHARGED.

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Rural Electrification and Renewable Energy Corporation (REREC) General Manager, Finance and ICT Noah Okech Oluoch before Milimani Anti-Corruption Magistrate court where he denied forging of masters degree.. /PHOTO BY S.A.N.

BY SAM ALFAN.

Rural Electrification and Renewable Energy Corporation General Manager, Finance and ICT has been charged with earning salaries and allowances amounting to Sh1. 4 million using fake degree. 

Noah Aketch Oluoch appeared before Milimani Anti-Corruption Magistrate Thomas Nzioki and denied the charges. 

Aketch is accused that between 1st April to 31st August 2022 within Nairobi County being a public officer employed as General Manager, Finance and ICT at Rural Electrification and Renewable Energy Corporation, you fraudulently acquired public property in terms of salary and allowances amounting to Sh. 1,455,066.0 from RERE.

Prosecution further told the court that on unknown date and place within the country , Aketch forged a Master of Business Administration Degree Certificate Number 0217 in the name of Noah Oluoch Oketch, purporting it to be a genuine document issued to you by the University of Nairobi, a fact you knew to be false.

He was further charged that on the 23rd day of March, 21 at the Rural Electrification and Renewable Energy Corporation, knowingly and fraudulently uttered a forged Master of Business ministration Degree Certificate to CPA r’eter Mbugua, the Chief Executive Officer at the RERE purporting it to be a genuine document issued to you by the University of Nairobi, a fact you knew to be false.

He was released on a bond of Sh1 million or alternative cash bail of Sh500, 000

ECHESA GRANTED ANTICIPATORY BOND OF SH2 MILLION AFTER ACCUSING POLICE OF MALICIOUS ARREST.

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Former Sports Cabinet Secretary Rashid Echesa

BY IRENE ONYANGO.

The High Court has granted former Cabinet Secretary Rashid Echesa anticipatory bail following his arrest last week over extortion claims.

Sitting in Kibera, Justice Diana Kavedza restrained the Directorate of Criminal Investigations (DCI) from detaining the former Sports minister, who spent most of the Easter holiday in police cells, before he was released to get medical attention.

“The DCI, their servants or agents, including law enforcement officers are restrained and prohibited from arresting or detaining Rashid Echesa pending hearing and determination of the application,” ruled Judge Diana.

The judge ordered Echesa to execute personal bond of Sh2 million.

She further directed Echesa to be presented to the DCI office once discharged from hospital.

The former CS , the court said, should appear not later than April 22, for interrogation.

However, the judge said the DCI officers are at liberty to investigate or charge Echesa for any criminal record.

The former CS moved to court seeking to block the DCI from arresting and detaining him without conducting investigations.

He argued that the allegations against him remains unproven as he has not been officially charged and even if he was to be charged, it is a bailable offence.

“I am sick person who has been in and out of the hospital and am required to go back to the hospital every now and then for follow-ups as per his doctor’s recommendations.

“My continuous detention shall prejudice my health am required to observe a particular diet while on medication and report back to hospital as and when required, ” Echesa told the court.

He further told the court there is an impending wanton and unjustifiable violation of his rights as stipulated and if the court does not urgently intervene he will suffer.

Echesa argued that the powers of arrest by the police are being abused and misused to harass, intimidate and oppress him to achieve extraneous political purposes unconnected with upholding the Law.

He added that as a law-abiding citizen, he is ready and willing to submit himself to a just and fair legal system/process in which his fundamental rights and freedoms are respected and protected.

According to Echesa, he has not committed any offence nor has he been involved in any criminal activity whether by himself or jointly with any other person.

He submitted that the cause of erroneous apprehensions and possible but his unwarranted detainment serves as a manifest indication that police or their agents, want to engage in a capricious and arbitrary course of action and that he could be a casualty of this unfortunate plan.

DRAMA IN COURT AS WOMAN DENIES “SPOUSE” ACCUSED OF DEFRAUDING HER.

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Tolbert Kemboi Chelogoi before court where he denied charges. /PHOTO BY S.A.N.

BY IRENE ONYANGO.

A woman caused a stir in a Nairobi court after denying a man in the dock accused of defrauding her.

Erica Kakile Mwania shot up in court and dismissed submissions by Tolbert Kemboi Chelogoi’s lawyer that the accused and the complainant were a man and his spouse.  

Kemboi is charged with falsely obtaining Sh20 million from Kakile

Kemboi was accused of defrauding Kakile the money between 5th October 2022 and the 27th July 2023 at Nairobi.

The charge sheet stated that with intent to defraud, he obtained Sh 20,096,00 from Kakile by falsely pretending that he was in a position to get a large amount of money in an offshore bank account that would benefit her.

He denied the charge before Milimani Chief Magistrate Bernard Ochoi.

While applying for lenient bail terms, Kemboi through his lawyer stated that the Kakile is his spouse and they have been living together.

But the woman dismissed the claims.

The court ordered him to deposit a bond of Sh3 million plus one surety or an alternative cash bail of Sh 500,000 to secure his release.

COURT ADJOURNS TRIAL OF MAN I. GOLD FRAUD OVER LACK OF WITNESSES.

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Businessman Abbas Badru Omuoma alias Yuri Sande Ismael before Milimani Chief court. /PHOTO BY S.A.N.

BY SAM ALFAN.

A gold fraud case against businessman Abbas Badru Omuoma alias Yuri Sande Ismael has been pushed to next month.

Milimani Senior Principal Magistrate Robinson Ondieki allowed an application by the prosecution to adjourn the hearing of the case after failing to secure to testify in the trial.

Omuyoma is accused of fraudulently obtaining an equivalent of Sh8.1 million, an offence he allegedly committed on on the 11th of August in 2021.

The accused person allegedly obtained $5,4550, an equivalent Sh8,182,500 from Yvan De Coninck by falsely pretending that he was in position to sell him 15 kilograms of gold.

He is currently out on a cash bail.

MAN CLAIMING TO BE FIRST LADY’S LEGAL ADVISOR TO FOOL THE POLICE FREED ON BOND.

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Waziri Benson Masubo alias Benson Waziri Chacha who denied impersonating first lady legal advisor. /PHOTO BY IRENE ONYANGO.

BY SAM ALFAN.

A man who claimed to be a legal advisor to the First Lady Rachel Ruto and who intended to use the police to scare his spouse’s ex-husband has been released on bail.

Waziri Benson Masubo alias Benson Waziri Chacha was ordered by the court to deposit bond of Sh200,000 and one surety to secure his release.

The trial magistrate said after considering the submissions by the parties, there were no compelling reasons to deny the accused person bail. The court noted that it was the first time Masubo was appearing before him.

The prosecution had submitted that in 2018, a warrant for his arrest was issued after he faiked to attend court.

The prosecution informed the court that Masubo called the police claiming that a car was trailing him.

He is alleged to have called the police on March 21, alleging that he was a legal officer attached to the office of her Excellency the First Lady and assumed to instruct the regional criminal investigation officer to arrest Kuhuhia.

It later emerged that the man is a former husband to his girlfriend Caroline Ngima. 

He is also charged with giving false information to Regional Criminal Investigations Officer Nairobi area. 

“Nairobi Regional Criminal Investigation received separate calls from two telephone numbers in which the caller introduced himself as Benson Waziri Chacha and purported to be  the legal officer advisor to the First Lady,” the investigating officer said.

The Investigating officer John Kiprop told the court Masubo instructed Nairobi RCIO take action against the occupant of the Toyota passo within Riruta.

The accused person is alleged to have reported the incident to Peter Njeru Nthiga, the Regional Criminal Investigations Officer, Nairobi.

He is reported to have claimed that a motor vehicle, KCU 521D, Toyota Passo was trailing him with a view of harming him. 

This prompted the officer to dispatch a team which established that the motor vehicle was not trailing him but belonged to a Kihuhia, a former husband to his girlfriend.

The police said Masubo wanted to use police officers to intimidate and harass Kihuhia and settle his personal scores.

WHY COURT FREED 48 FACING CHARGES RELATED TO SHISHA SMOKING.

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Police and NACADA displaying shisha instruments recovered during an operation in Nairobi.

BY SAM ALFAN.

A Shanzu court has released 48 people who were arrested for selling and smoking shisha saying the offence they were charged under does not exist in law.

Shanzu senior Principal Magistrate Joe Mkutu discharged all 48 persons under section 89(5) of Criminal Procedure Code (CPC). 

The magistrate said that the charge sheet did not disclose the offence. Under section 89(5) of CPC, the court is required to make an order refusing to admit the complaint or formal charge and shall record it reasons for the order.

“I hereby refuse to admit the charge in all consolidated matters before me. I proceed to discharge all the accused persons in the consolidated matters under section 89(5) of CPC.

The suspects were charged with offences under the Public Health (Control of Shisha Smoking) rules, of 2017- and offence purportedly committed on January 14, this year.

“There was no valid shisha ban under the said rules at the time and per dictates of the Constitution in the article I have cited above, the respective offences that they were charged with did not exist and no conviction can arise therefrom,” rule Magistrate.

The magistrate further said the contents of respective charge sheet defied the provisions of section 134 of  the Criminal Procedure Code which provides that a charge sheet shall contain a statement of specific offence or offences with which the accused person is charged.

Further, the charge sheet must have particulars as may be necessary for giving reasonable information to the nature of the offence..

“There is no specific offence in the cases before me as the offences did not exist at the time the accused persons are alleged to have flouted the law,” said the magistrate while discharging the suspects.

SBM BANK CEO RISKS JAIL FOR CONTEMPT OF COURT.

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SBM Bank limited Chief Executive officer Moezz Mir who risks six month civil jail.

BY SAM ALFAN.

The Chief Executive officer of SBM Bank risks being sent to prison for contempt of court over the refusal to release of Sh1.7 million.

The administrator of the estate of Innocent Kamadi Anyange wants the lender’s CEO Moezz Mir jailed for six months and SBM Bank be condemned and fined for disobeying court orders directing them to release the money.

“This court declares that SBM Bank limited through its Chief Executive officer Moezz Mir has willfully disobeyed the lawful court order herein dated 8th of November, 2023 and consequently finds him to be contempt of court,” seeks Nathan Madoga, the administrator.

He further wants the lender to be condemned to pay a fine commensurable or reasonably proportional to punishment for disobedience of court orders dated November 28, last year and issued on the November 6, 2023.

The court heard that pursuant to the Order of the Court dated 30th June 2020, the decretal sums Sh1,726,998.35 were credited by the Judgement Debtors into a joint interest earning account domiciled at SBM Bank.

The account was opened in the names of KTK Advocates & Edwin Omulama & Associates Advocates on 02/09/2020.

The court order directed the sums to be credited into the stated joint account pending hearing and determination of an intended appeal.

The court heard that on 19th September 2023, struck out the Judgement Debtors’ Appeal having been filed out of time and without leave of the court.

On 23rd November 2023, the Judgement Debtors filed an application under certificate of urgency at the Kiambu High Court, seeking a stay of the execution of the ruling and decree.

In a ruling, the High Court in Kiambu issued an order of maintenance of status quo of orders dated 27th November 2023. 

The process of execution of the Judgement and Decree of the Kikuyu Magistrate’s Court by way of release of the decretal sums held at SBM Bank was in progress because the Decree Holder had moved the said Court for the relevant order and given notice thereof to the Judgement Debtors as by law required. 

On 28th November 2023 the Judgement Debtors and the Decree Holder duly appeared before the Chief Magistrate at the Kikuyu Magistrates Court when the former tried to block the issuance of the order for the release of the decretal sums.

JUDGE LASHES OUT AT THE DPP IN APPLICATION SEEKING HIS RECUSAL FROM A GRAFT CASE.

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High Court Anti-Corruption Division Judge Prof. Nixon Sifuna and Director of Public Prosecution Renson Ingonga who had applied for High Court to review trial court decision regarding former Kenya Pipeline MD Charles Tanui and 2 others.

BY SAM ALFAN.

High Court judge Nixon Sifuna has lashed out at the Director of Public Prosecutions Renson Ingonga over an application seeking his recusal from a graft case.

While dismissing the application for his recusal, the judge said such applications should not be used by litigants for intimidation, insubordination, blackmail, arm-twisting, capture or even boxing of a judge into conforming to their whims.

The judge said recusal of a judicial officer from a case should be based on conflict of interest, bias or lack of impartiality but that it cannot be on the basis of a litigant’s mere displeasure, whim or unfounded apprehension.

The judge said such ulterior motives, if allowed, have the undesirable consequence of chipping away on the authority, dignity, integrity and independence of courts.

“That to me is not only an absurdity, but is also oppressive and an affront to judicial function. I liken my situation in this Application, to a situation in soccer, where some team after losing the march, has resorted to beating up the referee. Granting this wish will spell doom for the judicature and will be a death knell for judicial independence and judicial integrity. Prosecutors unlike ordinary litigants are also advocates of this court, “said the judge.

The judge made the observation in an application for review, sought by the DPP in a graft case against former Kenya Pipeline Company managing director Charles Tanuia, Josephat Kipkoech Sirma and Elias Maina Karumi.

The three are facing charges related to procurement irregularities and the DPP had applied to withdraw the case under section 87(a) of the criminal procedure code but it was rejected by senior principal magistrate Victor Wakhumile.

The plans to drop the case was opposed by the EACC, which investigated the matter.

In rejecting the application, the magistrate said the matter has been in court for almost four years and it should run its full course so that it can be resolved conclusively.

The magistrate said the DPP, while exercising his powers, should do it in a manner that takes into account the public interest.

Mr Wakhumile had noted that 25 witnesses had testified in the trial and the only remaining witness was the investigating officer, from Ethics and Anti-Corruption Commission (EACC) and was ready to take the witness stand and give his testimony and conclude the prosecution’s case.

The DPP through Alexander Muteti moved to the High Court but before the case was heard, he asked the judge to recuse himself from the case, noting that the judge had dismissed a similar application, to withdraw charges against Mr Sirma, before.

Mr Muteti also asked for the case to be determined by a bench of three judges.

The former KPC officials are accused of failing to comply with the law relating to procurement by authorising payment of Euros 261,070 (about Sh40.3 million) to Redline Limited for three autotransformers on February 18, 2014.

Justice Sifuna said any litigant dissatisfied with a judge’s ruling or judgment, has the option of either living with it, or appealing to a higher court. “But not to insist that the judge should in the remainder his of his judicial career never handle similar cases,” he said.